Borough of Ephrata, PA
Lancaster County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Ephrata 4-13-1992 as Ord. No. 1218. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Junk dealers — See Ch. 197.
Transient retail businesses — See Ch. 293.
Zoning — See Ch. 319.

§ 189-1 Title.

This chapter shall be known and cited as "Garage and Yard Sale Permit Ordinance."

§ 189-2 Purpose.

These rules and regulations are designed to control and restrict garage and yard sales in order to protect the public health, safety and convenience and to restrict such sales to casual and/or occasional occurrences only, in keeping with the character of the neighborhood where this activity is carried on in compliance with Chapter 319, Zoning, of the Code of the Borough of Ephrata. The intent of this chapter is to eliminate perpetual, prolonged and extended garage and yard sales in residential areas. Such sales, if continued indefinitely, tend to become retail businesses in residential areas and zones, create a nuisance and often violate the zoning regulations of the Borough of Ephrata. The provisions of this chapter arise from the need to limit, regulate, restrict and control garage and yard sales. It is not the intent of this chapter to change or amend Chapter 319, Zoning, Chapter 293, Transient Retail Businesses, and/or any other ordinances of the Borough of Ephrata.

§ 189-3 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
A. 
The sale or offering for sale of new, used or secondhand items of personal property at any one (1) residential premises at any one (1) time.
B. 
Includes all sales in residential areas entitled "garage sale," "yard sale," "tag sale," "porch sale," "lawn sale," "attic sale," "basement sale," "rummage sale," "flea market sale" or any similar casual sale of tangible personal property.
GOODS
Any goods, warehouse merchandise or other personal property capable of being the object of a sale regulated hereunder.
MUNICIPALITY
All residential dwellings located within any type of zone, zoned area, zoning district, whether or not said areas or zones are residential, business, commercial or otherwise, within the geographic boundaries of the Borough of Ephrata.
PERSONS
Individuals, partnerships, family groups, voluntary associations and corporations.

§ 189-4 Permit required; fee; conditions for sales. [1]

A. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to conduct a garage sale within the geographic boundaries of the Borough of Ephrata without first obtaining a garage and yard sale permit from the Codes Department after filing an application containing the information hereinafter specified.
B. 
It shall be unlawful to participate in more than two (2) garage sales in any one (1) calendar year.
C. 
Not more than two (2) garage and yard sale permits shall be issued to any one (1) person in any one (1) calendar year.
D. 
Not more than two (2) garage and yard sale permits shall be issued for any one (1) premises in any one (1) calendar year.
E. 
Each permit application shall be accompanied by a fee as shall be set from time to time by resolution of the Borough Council.
F. 
It is a requirement of garage and yard sale permits that the names and addresses of all participating persons be listed on the application. The garage and yard sale permit must be posted at a visible location to the traveling public for the duration of the sale.
G. 
It shall be unlawful to conduct any garage sale with a duration exceeding two (2) consecutive days.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code; see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I.

§ 189-5 Exemptions.

This chapter shall not be applicable to:
A. 
Persons selling goods pursuant to an order of process or a court of competent jurisdiction.
B. 
Persons acting in accordance with their powers and duties as public officials.
C. 
Any person selling or advertising for sale an item or items of personal property which is specifically named or described in the advertisement.
D. 
Any publisher of a newspaper, magazine or other publication or other communications media which publishes or broadcasts anything in good faith without knowledge of its false, deceptive or misleading character or without knowledge that the provisions of this chapter have not been met.
E. 
Any sale conducted by any legitimate business or commercial or industrial establishment on property zoned under the zoning regulations of the Borough of Ephrata with or without the protection of the nonconforming use section of the zoning laws,[1] or any sale conducted by any other vendor or dealer when the sale is conducted in a properly zoned area and not otherwise prohibited by laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and ordinances of the Borough of Ephrata, including this chapter.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 319, Zoning, Art. XX, Nonconformities.
F. 
Sales by a bona fide charitable, eleemosynary, educational, cultural or governmental institution, civic group, service club, religious or fraternal society or other tax-exempt organization; provided, however, that the burden of proof to establish the exemption under this subsection shall be on the organization or institution claiming such exemption.
G. 
Any public auction having a duration of no more than two (2) days and conducted by an auctioneer, licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

§ 189-6 Enforcement; complaints.

A. 
This chapter shall be enforced by the Codes Department, and it shall be its duty to investigate and prosecute any violation of this chapter.
B. 
If, after an investigation, a violation is found to exist, the Codes Department shall prosecute a complaint before a District Justice pursuant to the provisions of this chapter.

§ 189-7 Conduct. [1]

The persons to whom the garage and yard sale permit was issued and the person conducting the sale and the owner, tenant or occupant of the premises where the sale or activity is conducted shall be jointly or severally responsible for the maintenance of good order and decorum on the premises during the hours of such sale or activity.
A. 
No such person shall permit any loud or boisterous conduct on such premises or permit vehicles to impede the passage of the traffic on any roads or streets in the area of the premises where the sale is being conducted.
B. 
In the event of an emergency, all such persons shall obey reasonable orders from any member of the Police Department or the Fire Department in order to maintain the public health, safety and convenience.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code; see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I.

§ 189-8 Violations and penalties. [1]

Any person, firm or corporation who or which shall violate any provision of this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof, be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than six hundred dollars ($600.), plus costs of prosecution, and, in default of payment thereof, to imprisonment for a term not to exceed thirty (30) days. Every day that a violation of this chapter continues shall constitute a separate offense.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code; see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I.